We Banjo 3

The band from Galway that plays a blend of traditional Irish, old-time, and bluegrass music they call Celtgrass. ℘℘℘ The banjo has a long, contested, and even controversial history. Musicologists now generally agree that an early form of the instrument was first brought to America by enslaved people from west Africa. It was possibly an akonting, a three-stringed instrument with a...

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Love of Country

When music legend Bruce Springsteen recorded his excellent 2007 “Live in Dublin” concert, it’s no accident that the famed rock-n-roller opted for a decidedly more country flavor, using fiddles and slide guitars, on tunes such as “Jesse James” and “My Oklahoma Home.” Springsteen – who in his recent biography said he grew up on a New Jersey block surrounded by “old-school...

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“Forty Shades of Green” at 60

The iconic song about Ireland, written by country music legend Johnny Cash in 1969, is still popular today. ℘℘℘ When Cash visited Ireland in 1959, he was already a successful country musician, his hits including “Folsom Prison Blues” and “I Walk the Line.” He came to Ireland, though, as a tourist. He later explained his inspiration for writing the song as, “I was in a car...

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Woodstock: The Irish Contribution

On the 50th anniversary of the Woodstock Music Festival, Christine Kinealy remembers the legendary guitarist from Northern Ireland who gave a celebrated performance. ℘℘℘ Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, The Who, The Band, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Jefferson Airplane, Ten Years After, Joan Baez, Santana, Joe Cocker, Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, and – Henry McCullough. They all...

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A Southern Celtic
Christmas Concert

The sudden death five years ago of the Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) evoked an unprecedented outpouring of grief around the world. Generally acknowledged as the greatest poet of the age, Seamus (as he was known to everyone) was beloved as much for his down to earth humanity as for the wisdom, honesty and lyrical beauty of his work. A rare interview with Heaney is one of the many...

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